Hair Care

By Kelly Hushin

June in New York City is typically…well…perhaps typically isn’t the right word anymore. This year, June seems to be worse than August, which doesn’t bode well for the heat and humidity the next few months will surely dump on us. And through the hot mess that is the NYC summer, our feet will be beset with flip-flop scars, our shirt pits sweaty pools, our skin a constant sheen and our hair completely irreparable.

You feel like jumping in but don’t want to ruin your hair. We know the feeling

While the concrete jungle of NYC is certainly up there on the list of hot cities, almost everywhere in the country women suffer with this dilemma: how can we muster up the strength, motivation, etc. to do our hair when by the time we arrive at our desks in the morning it looks worse than after running the half marathon? As it turns out, companies are privy to this “situation” and have tried to remedy it for us – thank goodness. In fact, there are so many products worth noting this summer that BN will bring you two parts to this story, Part II coming next month. These are the brands who have devised tools that will keep our hair in check, even through this hottest of hot summers (global warming anyone?) The irony is that in order to keep said hair in check, we must often add heat to it, which of course is the last thing we want to do in a 90+ degree apartment. Alas, this may be the only way to conquer the beast, so duck into an air conditioned room and make use of some of the following tools this summer.

If you Must BlowDry, Blow Dry Right
We understand that for some gals, the idea of NOT blowdrying before leaving the house is sacrilegious, a hair crime of epic proportions. If you are one who can’t even dream of exiting your home without perfectly and fully dried hair, consider the Paul Mitchell Pro Tools Express Ion Dry v.2. While it’s not terribly new, (launched in April of last year) it’s a real performer.

At 1875 watts, this is true professional grade, suitable for preparation to brave the humidity-soaked air. With a powerful air flow and an extra dose of Express Ion Complex™, this high-speed styling tool cuts back on your drying time to maximize healthy results. Far infrared heat protects hair from damage, and super-charged negative ions break up water molecules to infuse them into the hair shaft, restoring moisture and sealing the cuticle. The dryer is available only at professional salons, so you’ll have to do some digging, but the find will be worth your while.

Another 1875 watt-er, this time from Gold ‘N Hot Elite, is a bit more in-reach at a much lower price point and still a very effective dryer. It has an ionic generator that can be turned on and off, which is rare to find at this price point on the pro level. If you have fine, thin hair, you don’t need this do-dad, but the rest of us can certainly take advantage. Available at http://www.belsonproducts.com

But Remember: with Heat Must come Brush
If you unabashedly admit to being aforementioned woman who must blow dry even in the thickest of heat, please remember to accompany your blow dry session with the right brush. A great all-for-one, one-for-all option is the Keratin Complex Smoothing Therapy Curved Vent Brush developed especially for Keratin Complex Smoothing Therapy.

The curved design allows more heat to flow to the hair shaft, reducing drying time and potentially reducing heat damage too. Grab one at select salons or on the Keratin Complex online store at http://www.keratincomplex.com

Straigtener Adicts…sigh…We Forgive You
If you’re on the blow dry bandwagon, you’re probably a hair straightening addict too, aren’t you? We sigh only because we know how hard it must be for you once summer comes and that moist air hits those ironed out follicles, curling them right back up again. Oh, the frustration. You’re going to need some serious power and high-tech straighteners to combat this, something like the Salontech Silicone 450 Iron.

Salontech’s tools are all custom-designed and produced in-house, after extensive research and development processes. The silicone bars on the plates heat up to 450 degrees in 17 seconds and beep when the high temp has been reached. The three-bar silicone technology is patented and made to grip hair in sections one at a time to lessen damage. This high-end tool can be found through the brand’s online store, http://www.salontech.com

With many a straightener on the market, perhaps you’re looking for something a bit “different” this summer, something that will really get your hair juices flowing, get you moving, shall we say. If so, you might want to give Sam Brocato’s VibraSTRAIT Iron a go as it will do much of the moving for you. VibraSTRAIT is the world’s first vibrating straightening iron, available from the Sam Brocato Salon, http://www.sambrocatosalon.com.

The combination of heat and up to 7,500 vibrations per minute smooth and straighten to keep hair shiny and healthy. While many flat irons are created with ceramic coated plates, the VibraSRAIT has nano-silver coated plates that retain their slip through repeated use. It also uses an integrated sensor that enables a flash heat-up and rapid cool-down.

Or the Easy Alternative: Don’t Fight the Curl, Embrace It
A simple solution to the hair conundrum is to let the humidity work in your hair’s favor by playing up any and all curl you have. If you’re blessed (or cursed) with ultra-straight hair that doesn’t hold a curl, then forget this option. But if you’re like many ladies out there and have hair somewhere in between curly and straight, now’s the time to let the curls take over. Before bed and after a shower, put in a set of Remington Colossal Curl Setters while you watch late night TV or browse the Internet.

The set comes with 12 flocked velvet rollers to reduce potential damage and a thermal wax core which allows the roller to retain high heat longer and set curls faster. Take the rollers out, go to sleep and in the morning your hair will be tousled and curly and ever-so-sexy. Add a bit of mouse, gel or styling spray to give it a beachy look and you’ll be ready to go. The curlers are readily available at your nearest Wal-Mart or similar value stores.

Stay tuned for next month when we bring you a whole different set of tools to set you on your summer way to good hair that you won’t want to throw into a ponytail…at least not immediately.

Originally published July 2010
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